The Anonymous Widower

How Much Beer Was Drunk In Trafalgar Square Yesterday?

Accordiung to this report on the BBC web site, Westminster’s team of cleaners, picked up about two tonnes of empty beer cans in Trafalgar Square yesterday.

if we assume that a can weighs about 20 grams, that means about 100,000 cans of beer were drunk in the square yesterday. Reportedly 25,000 Scots came down to see the match.

But at least little untoward happened!

The same story was reported in The Scotsman and a reader added this comment.

If we can organize this maybe we can handle being independent. Put a deposit on beer cans and the homeless will benefit.

Although, their estimate of the number of cans was a lot lower.

The Germans who came for the Champion League Final didn’t seem to drink much at all.

August 15, 2013 Posted by | Sport | , , , | Leave a comment

A Gluten-Free Lunch In Shanklin

I needed some lunch and was walking back to the station, when I saw Micky’s Munch Box.

As you can see I sat in the sun and ate a toasted cheese and bacon sandwich in gluten-free bread.

With the long lasting qualities of some gluten-free breads like Genius, I think we’ll see more of this type of cafe catering for those like me, who need to be gluten-free.

August 15, 2013 Posted by | Food | , | Leave a comment


I got off the Island Line train at the end, which was Shanklin.

As you can see I walked to the beach and then went back up the hill to the station.

I was glad to see a map, although the town had lots of finger posts and my original navigation system had no difficulty finding my way around.

August 15, 2013 Posted by | World | , | Leave a comment

Ivy Bank

I saw this sign in Shanklin and it reminded me of the worst hotel I ever stayed in.

Ivy Bank

Ivy Bank

It was in Monmouth in Wales and my father used to tell the tale with gusto. My parents, my sister and myself, had arrived late in the afternoon in the town and as ever, my father hadn’t booked a hotel, so he went searching and found this hotel called Ivy Bank. It had an air about it like a house, where someone has just died and everybody except for the maiden aunt has moved out. I can’t remember who slept where, but I can remember going down for breakfast and we sat like dummies waiting for the other guests or some staff to turn up. In the end the lady, turned up dressed like some stereotype out of films where doors creek and virgins scream. But she was carrying an enormous tray covered in every sort of food to make up the largest English or more truthfully Welsh, breakfast I’ve ever seen.

It was good and we ate well, before my father paid for the rooms and food and we left.

It later transpired that my mother hadn’t slept, as she could hear, what she thought were rats running all over the place.

Since that date, I have vowed never to set food in any house, pub, restaurant or hotel called Ivy Bank.

August 15, 2013 Posted by | World | , | Leave a comment

A Cruise To The Isle Of Wight

Until yesterday, I’d never been to the Isle of Wight.

I took the train from Waterloo to Portsmouth Harbour station, from where I walked to the catamaran for Ryde.

The pictures were taken on the way over.

The ferry was fairly busy with passengers.  Unfortunately, you don’t seem to be able to get into the fresh air.

The fort incidentally, is one of the Palmerston Forts.

August 15, 2013 Posted by | Transport | , | 3 Comments


I can’t understand all of the fuss about Jeremy Paxman’s beard.  I’ve had mine for nearly fifty years and my son, who is in his mid-forties, has never seen me clean-shaven.

It’s well-trimmed now, although in its more wild days, my beard graced the letters page of the Today program on Radio 4. At the time, there was trouble in Egypt and the BBC’s reporter there had a beard and he had a bit of trouble, as the Army and Police, were rather against those with beards, who they thought were Muslim fundamentalists. I wish i had a copy of that letter!

August 15, 2013 Posted by | News | | Leave a comment

Is Nationwide Being High-Handed?

On my on-line bank summary from Nationwide, there is a button saying Upgrade Now against my Current Account.

It doesn’t say any more and I suspect, it would put me on one of their pay-ten-pounds-a-month accounts, which give me a right to useless interest rates.

Surely, I demand something a bit more informative!

August 15, 2013 Posted by | Finance | , | 1 Comment

A Trip On The Island Line

The Island Line on the Isle of Wight, is a unique train line, as these pictures show.

It was just like going back to my childhood and be transported in one of the old 1938 Stock, London Underground trains, that I can just about remember on the Piccadilly line in the 1950s and 1960s.

The Class 483, as they are now called,  still have all the same noises and a lot of the wooden features, although the seats and a few other internal features had been updated.

I do wonder whether old London Underground trains, which generally have been immaculately maintained could be used on some of the far flung parts of the network to re-instate old lines.

One of the reasons, they ended up on the Isle of Wight, was that this line has gauge clearance problems and London’s redundant tube trains fit the space available. And of course, third-rail electric trains are easier to install than  those with overhead wires.

There is a lot of talk about using new trams or tram-trains on some branch lines, but surely some retired tube trains, would be a lot more affordable and a tourist attraction as well. Over the next few years, there is going to be a lot of these trains, that will be replaced in London.

They deserve better than being scrapped!

August 15, 2013 Posted by | Transport | , , , | 3 Comments